Play about Jack the Ripper victim staged at Sunderland theatre

The Royalty Theatre has begun 2019 with the premiere of local writer Billy Tower’s Mary Mary.

Wednesday, 23rd January 2019, 11:23 am
Updated Wednesday, 23rd January 2019, 11:28 am

The play is based around the life of Mary Kelly, considered by many to be the fifth and final victim of Whitechapel killer Jack the Ripper. Little is known of Mary Kelly’s life before she came to reside in Whitechapel – making her by far the most mysterious of the serial killer’s alleged victims.

Director Abbi Laidler said: “It is a fictional account of factual events and I try to explore how those events had an impact on the Whitechapel community and Mary Kelly in particular. The victims have been reduced to names in police files, but these women had lives that are often overlooked in the search for the killer. I am not interested in naming the killer in this play, I am using Mary to focus on how these events affected her as an individual. I really hope you enjoy this show written by the talented Billy Towers.”

The play, which runs until January 26, stars Nikki Slack as Mary and Andrew Barella as Joseph Barnett. Also appearing are Helen Bowie and Alex Goodchild.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Being performed in the Royalty’s studio theatre, which last year saw performances of Five Kinds of Silence, Temple and new piece Jesu Mercy, all tickets are £6.50 and are strictly limited to 60 per evening.

Tickets can be booked via or on 0333 666 3366.

Plays remaining this season are Hobson’s Choice (February 18-23), Dial M for Murder (March 18-23), Shakers (Re-stirred) (April 24-27), Barefoot in the Park (May 20-25) and Emma (June 24-29).

Tickets for regular season shows are £8/£6.50 in advance, £9/£7.50 on the night.